Legislators Critical of Two Correctional Facilities Closing

The Governor recently announced his plan to close and rebuild Stateville Correctional Center in Will County and Logan Correctional Center in Lincoln, leaving many unanswered questions about what will happen to the current employees, inmates, and the local communities.

In February, the Governor proposed $900 million for maintenance and modernization of Department of Corrections facilities within his proposed FY25 budget. In the joint prison closure announcement from the Governor and the Illinois Department of Corrections, it became clear that the money was meant to be used to demolish and rebuild Logan and Stateville.

Currently, the Governor is planning to rebuild Stateville at the same location as the current facility, but his administration has released no details or commitments on the location of the new Logan Correctional Center. This lack of commitment drew scrutiny from locally elected officials, including State Senator Sally Turner (R-Beason), State Representative Bill Hauter (R-Morton), Logan County Board Chairman Emily Davenport, and Lincoln Mayor Tracy Welch.

They expressed concerns about what would happen to the more than 500 direct jobs, hundreds more indirect jobs, and economic benefits that Logan Correctional Center provides. While they recognized a need for repairs, they rightly pointed out that the facilities’ current state of disrepair exists because of administrative neglect and misplaced priorities.

Meanwhile, the local union representing the two facilities came out against the plan citing fears that even temporary closures of the centers would “disrupt and potentially destabilize the prison system, while bringing upheaval to the lives of affected employees and individuals in custody.”

In accordance with the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability process, construction of new facilities will not commence until all requirements of the State Facilities Closure Act are met. More information about that process, including a timeline, can be found here.

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